There's no doubt that the real estate profession is a pretty serious way to make a living and not all agents will infuse their serious side with their personal side. Guess what? That's okay. The rest of us thinks that would make for a pretty dull relationship with our clients and for me personally, I don't think I would be able to help clients find the right property without a little give and take on a personal level. So many clues exist when someone takes the time to find out not only how many bedrooms and baths are needed but what tickles your buyer's fancy? In my not really very humble opinion, therein lies the difference between finding a house and a home. There's more often than not a lovely pay-off when you take the time to encourage the personal side, the real connectivity of real estate...lots of agents end up with darned fabulous post transaction relationships.
Don't get me wrong...once in a while there can be a clinker. Clinkers occur when the chemistry didn't mix well but it doesn't get discovered until after you started working together. No one's fault. This is usually caught early on in the relationship and a bit of adjustment is called for and the working relationship can resume until closing. Those are clinkers, clunkers are something else altogether. Clunkers will usually happen at the very first meeting, inexplicably either the agent or the customer will feel hairs raise on the back of their necks. Visceral reaction to each other with a capital V. Do. Not. Ignore. This. Feeling. Even though you might be able to successfully close a transaction with a clunker beginning...it won't be pretty. Both the agent and the buyer will feel like a dementor was the back seat driver throughout the experience and worse, following the closing (if it happens) forget about harmony and good will. Agents thrive on good referrals, bad referrals not so much.
Luckily, most successful agents walk away from transactions with a minimum of a happy client and if they are really fortunate...a new friend.
We were taken to dinner last night by new friends, thrilled with their new home and community. We suggested meeting at Kostas of Dillsboro and had a wonderful visit accompanied by a delicious meal and an incredibly witty woman for our waitperson. There was an opportunity to discover lots of things in common, like a love of good and real food. Three of us had Spanakopeta and Greek Salad. My mom used to make this and it always turned out like what the finest Greek restaurant's serve. Years ago, she gave me her recipe and I always thought it would be difficult but it really isn't. Our new friend mentioned that a friend had given her a recipe that she'd never tried because it seemed so complicated. I promised her my mother's recipe...so here it is.
Mona's Mom's Spanakopeta (Greek Spinach Pie)
- 4 - 10 oz packages frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and thoroughly squeezed dry. Ok to use fresh or a good quality canned. The trick is getting it squeezed dry. I usually defrost the night before and in the morning put it in a colander with a weighted bowl on it then squeeze it dry by hand.
- 1 - 8 oz package cream cheese, softened
- 1 - lb Feta, crumbled
- 1/2 cup grated Romano
- 4 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1 small onion, chopped fine
- 3 TBS olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp chopped fresh dill or dried dill to taste (optional to some but not to me)
- 15 fila dough sheets (frozen food section - do not be afraid of this!)
- 1/2 - lb melted butter
Combine spinach with ALL ingredients in a large bowl except fila and butter. Grease 10x15 baking pan and arrange 9 fila sheets in pan then immediately brush generously with butter. (fila dries quickly, so you have to be quicker with the butter and keep the dough covered in the package until ready to use).
Spread spinach filling evenly over the fila and then top with remaining 6 fila sheets. Quickly brush with butter and seal edges to retain filling. Brush again with remaining butter.
Chill in refrigerator until firm. Preheat oven to 350. Remove from refrigerator and slice into serving sized pieces THEN bake for 45 minutes. Let sit for 5 or so minutes then serve and take a bow. Never tell those you've served how easy it actually was to make!
Wow, this was a longer post than I planned but oh well. Aside from the advocacy role I've played in real estate and of course, earning a living... hands down the other hugely benefit from this chosen profession is enjoying the personal side of connectivity in real estate!